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Structural Response of Propped Fractures in Green River Oil Shale as It Relates to Underground Retorting.
NTIS: PB 241 217 :21 pages
The structural response of propped oil shale fractures was determined for each of two different grades of Green River oil shales (38.0 and 29.0 Gpt) as they were heated in an inert atmosphere from ambient to subretorting temperatures (below those required for rapid pyrolysis of the organic matter). Small oil shale cores were propped apart by 3-mm glass beads to simulate a small cross section of a propped oil shale fracture between an injection and a producing well. These specimens were then heated at a uniform rate up to 800 deg f in a specially designed test cell under stress levels from 100 to 1,000 psi in biaxial and in triaxial confinement. Under the conditions of heat and compressive stress utilized in this study, all of the propped fractures in the two oil shales underwent structural deformation ranging from partial to complete collapse, as evidenced by proppant embedment. Structural collapse of induced fractures would in turn result in serious impairment or complete loss of the fracture flow capacities of the specimens. Results from this Bureau of Mines study indicate that underground retorting of Green River oil shale may be seriously impaired by loss of permeability when utilizing propped fractures in oil shales assaying more than 28 gpt. Work done in cooperation with the University of Wyoming.
IH; Report of Investigation;
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS: PB 241 217
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division